Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Thailand deports beggars, group says

Thailand deports beggars, group says

Thailand deports beggars, group says

THAI authorities have completed the deportation of more than 500 Cambodian beggars rounded up in Bangkok earlier this month, a Thailand-based rights group said Thursday, as activists registered concerns about the possible deportation from Thailand of thousands of migrant labourers.

Jackie Pollack of the Mekong Migration Network, a network of nongovernmental organisations in the Greater Mekong Sub-Region, said every member of a group of approximately 570 Cambodians had been sent back over the border from Bangkok, and that more were being arrested “every day” as part of a campaign to crack down on beggars in the Thai capital.

Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs deputy spokesman Thani Thongphakdi said Wednesday that the deportation was conducted “in accordance with our immigration laws” in an effort to prevent trafficking.

In an open letter to Thai Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva published this week, 36 organisations, including Human Rights Watch, called on the Thai government to clarify its migrant worker policy after Bangkok set a deadline of February 28 for migrant workers to register with the government and complete a Nationality Verification process.

“We would be most concerned if the [Thai government] decides to adopt a policy not to renew work permits and deport migrants,” the groups wrote.

There are 124,174 Cambodians registered to work in Thailand, Pollack said, with “probably at least the same number undocumented”.

ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY CHEANG SOKHA

MOST VIEWED

  • Government hits back at threats to pull EBA, suspend UN seat

    The spokesman for the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) has said the government is in no way concerned after the European Parliament gave it three months to reverse what it called the “systematic repression of the political opposition”. Ignoring the ultimatum could mean facing

  • Chinese influx pushing locals, Westerners out of Preah Sihanouk

    Some within the Kingdom’s tourism industry have speculated that the recent influx of Chinese visitors may hinder domestic tourism as the price of accommodations in the coastal city of Sihanoukville continues to rise. Preah Sihanouk province, which has become a hotbed for Chinese investment

  • Sar Kheng: Sokha requested security

    Interior Minister Sar Kheng on Sunday revealed the story behind the transfer of former opposition party leader Kem Sokha from Trapaing Phlong prison in Tbong Khmum province to his house in the capital. Speaking at the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) headquarters in Prey

  • ‘Dire consequences’ from sanctions, warns AmCham

    American businesspeople in Cambodia have warned that any sanction against the Kingdom would have “dire consequences” that could push Cambodia even further into the arms of China. In a letter to US senators and representatives dated Monday, the American Chamber of Commerce Cambodia (AmCham) said